By Vic Diaz (@TheVicDiaz)
November is a beautiful time of year. It’s a time where we’re smack-dab in the middle of fall and we get that amazing feeling that our favorite holidays are just around the corner. The first holiday to come around is Thanksgiving, a time where we come together and show gratitude for what we have and of course, stuff our faces. But what comes after turkey day? The Friday that is just as anticipated as any other holiday on the calendar: Black Friday.
Black Friday is the day where stores open before the crack of dawn so consumers can storm in and buy early Christmas presents at seemingly-discounted prices. If you’ve ever been a part of the Black Friday craze, whether you’re the customer who pushes people out of the way to ensure you get everything on your list, or you’re the retail employee overwhelmed by the mobs of people asking you a world of questions, you know that this day is anything but festive. So if you’re planning on camping out and taking advantage of every sale imaginable, you may want to pay attention to these following tips.
1. Technology is your friend – use it!
Let’s face it. You carry mobile technology everywhere you go. Your smartphone or tablet can possibly be your greatest asset on the Black Friday battlefield. There are apps across the spectrum that can assist you in optimizing your Black Friday experience.
Apps like Sazze’s Black Friday 2013 Ads App compile advertisements from major retailers to help you plan out your day.
With tools like these, it should be a breeze to come up with the proper strategies to demonstrate true shopping dominance.
2. Kill them with kindness
As hectic as things can get on Black Friday, it can be very easy to lose control and lose your inhibitions. The important thing to do on that day is to not lose sight of the situation; there are hundreds, if not thousands of people just like you who are just as frantic as you are. The last thing you need to do is take out your frustration on other customers, or even worse, store employees.
If a certain item is out of stock, thank the employee for his time. If someone beats you for the last item on the shelf, just walk away and save your griping for the drive home. In short, just keep your cool.
3. Home-field advantage
With all the advances in modern technology, we do almost everything from home; pay bills, watch movies, even rant about your day at work! With that in mind, it would only make sense to fight the Black Friday fight from the comfort of your own home.
Most retailers have the same in-store bargains online, allowing you to perhaps even have the advantage due to not having to camp out and run around a humongous store. If you absolutely feel the need to go out and be a part of the madness, see tip No. 1 for reference on how to get the leg up.
4. Stay comfortable!
Like any other long-lasting excursion, the key to survival is comfort. You’re going to be doing a lot of walking around through hard surfaces, so make sure to wear comfortable shoes meant for athletic use. To achieve maximum comfort, wear sweats and hoodies. After all, you’re not there to flaunt your fashion, you’re there to get everything you need.
If you know you’re going to be out for most of the day, be sure to have snacks handy or knowledge of local fast-food restaurants where you can get in, grub and get out.
5. Gift receipts: the ultimate plan B
In the event that the gifts you exhausted yourself to buy are not to the recipient’s liking, make sure you have the best backup possible: the gift receipt. Due to the holiday shopping sprees, most stores will provide a gift receipt upon request, giving you the assurance that all will go well.
No matter how confident you feel that your gift’s recipient will absolutely love what you’ve bought, always make sure you’re prepared.
Come Nov. 29, if you apply these tips to your shopping experience, you’ll be sure to stand above the rest at the end of the day. If you do choose to take part in the holiday havoc of Black Friday, be sure to do so responsibly.